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Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Logic Model

This is the first assignment for my Program Evaluation course, which is to take an existing program and to create a "logic model" for it... basically outline the entire program from start to finish. I chose to write about "Every 15 Minutes", an anti-drunk driving program at high schools. Check it out!

Every 15 Minutes Program: Logic Model Narrative

Program Mission:
The official mission statement for the National Every 15 Minutes Organization is as follows:

“It is the mission of the National Every 15 Minutes Organization to prevent impaired driving tragedies and to save lives by building and supporting a national network of organizations with similar missions while preserving the integrity of the program. To provide students with the best prevention and intervention tools possible to deal with making mature decisions while creating meaningful family dialogue.”[1]

To achieve this mission, the organization provides resources for communities across the country to run the “Every 15 Minutes” Program at their local high school. 

Diagram Notes:
The attached diagram outlines the components of the program, flowing from left to right. It starts with the inputs, then leading to the main components of the activities, the program outputs, and finally arriving at the program’s short term and long term outcomes. The external factors are listed in a box at the bottom of the chart.

Program Administration:
The local community is responsible for running the Every 15 Minutes program at their high school. It is expected that participating groups donate their time, but all associated costs are funded by grants from the National Every 15 Minutes Organization, in addition to personal donations.

The following groups are the inputs necessary for administrating the activities:
  • Police and Fire Departments
  • Local Hospital
  • Video Production Crew
  • Community Officials
  • District Attorney’s Office
  • Funeral Home
  • Other Community Volunteers

And the following groups are the inputs that would participate in the activities:
  • High School Students
  • Families of High School Students
  • High School Faculty

There are a series of activities that occur as a part of the Every 15 Minutes program. The program expands over a two-day period.

The day before the program, the “grim reaper” notifies random students from the student body that they will be involved in the Every 15 Minutes program. In preparation, the student participant’s parents are asked to write an obituary for their child, summarizing the contributions their son/daughter has made to the school/community, and submit it to the “grim reaper”.

On day one, the “grim reaper” visits classrooms every 15 minutes, and removes one of the participants from their class. The police officer reads that student’s obituary to the class, and the student returns to class with “dead” outfit on (white face makeup, black “Every 15 Minutes” t-shirt, and coroners tag), and is instructed to not speak for the rest of the day. Simultaneously, uniformed officers leave “death notices” at the home or workplace of the parents when their child “dies”.

After lunch, the entire school comes outside of the school to the site of a simulated traffic accident, complete with rescue workers, wrecked cars, and “injured” students. More students will “die” as a result of the accident. At this point the student body continues on with the school day, without their “dead” classmates.

Meanwhile, the “dead” participants then leave school with the rescue workers, and experience the trip to the morgue, emergency room, and jail; the locations where victims of drunk driving accidents end up. A video production crew documents these visits to be used in activities the next day. Participants are then transported to an overnight retreat, and are not allowed to communicate with others outside of the program, to symbolize the separation from their friends and family. Various activities could be completed at the choice of individual programs, but most importantly the students are asked to write a letter to their families about their experience, starting with

"Dear Mom and Dad, every fifteen minutes someone in the United States dies from an alcohol related traffic collision, and today I died. I never had the chance to tell you..."

Parents of the “dead” are asked to write the same letter to their child that night.

The next day, the entire school attends an assembly, a “funeral” led by the “grim reaper” and a police officer, that shows the school the experiences those students had through the footage assembled by the video production team. The morgue and emergency room personnel make speeches, and the “dead” students and their parents are asked to read the letters they composed the night before. Members of the community who were personally affected by drunk driving incidents are also encouraged to make presentations.[2]

Expected Outputs:
As the National Every 15 Minutes Organization says, “Life's lessons are best learned through experience. Unfortunately, when the target audience is teens and the topic is drinking and texting while driving, experience is not the teacher of choice.”[3]

By providing a simulated experience, the Every 15 Minutes program aims to achieve the following outputs:
  • Have students consider the consequences of drinking or texting while driving
  • Challenge students to think about issues of personal safety as a whole
  • Help students make mature decisions when lives are involved
  • Open dialogue between parents and students regarding these issues

After experiencing what would happen in the case of an accident with an accident occurring, the program produces the opportunity for students to work through these issues, and talk to classmates and community members about them.

To measure if these outputs were achieved, it would be beneficial for schools to administer a pre and post test, asking students to rate their likeliness to participate in some of these activities, both positive and negative. Students should be surveyed both immediately after the program, and a couple of months later to see if the impact of the program was just immediate or if it was maintained. In addition, students from a high school in the same area not experiencing the Every 15 Minutes program should be surveyed as a control.

As a whole, the National Every 15 Minutes Organization encourages each school to administer a survey to the “dead” students after their program, asking them to “rate the meaningfulness of different components of the program” on a scale from 1 to 5. In 2001, these were the aggregate results of the schools that participated[4]:

Event / Goal
Memorial Assembly
Learning about the grief process
Understanding my own vulnerability
Legal aspects of drinking and driving
Hearing from professionals
Collision scene/arrest
Being pulled out of class

Expected Outcomes:
Ideally, the Every 15 Minutes program would produce a variety of outcomes. In the short term, it would decrease the number of students who text while driving, and who drive under the influence. After seeing first hand what could happen to them and their peers, hopefully they see the danger of participating in these activities. Similarly, after participating in the program the student should know not to get into a car with someone who has been driving under the influence, or who is texting while driving. Just because they are not the driver does not mean negative consequences will not occur.

In the long term, as a result of students making better decisions in the short term, it is projected that fatalities and injuries from impaired driving will decline.

To measure these outcomes within a specific population, statistics from the Department of Transportation and Highway Patrols on impaired driving crashes from year to year can be compared to a control from a similar community. This will show whether or not the Every 15 Minutes program has created a negative correlation with the number of accidents.

Overall, according to the Department of Transportation, 10,839 people were killed in alcohol-impaired driving crashes, which is approximately one-third of all traffic-related deaths in the United States[5].  This is a significant decrease to one person dying every 48 minutes due to an impaired driver, as opposed to one person dying every 15 minutes when the program started.

Because of the unscientific nature of this program, there are several external factors that could have an immeasurable impact on these results. It is difficult to determine which of the following factors, or if the Every 15 minutes program, has had the greatest effect:
  • Other alcohol and drug resistance programs in school
  • Other programs hosted in the community
  • Individual parenting tactics
  • Inability to perfectly replicate program at every school
  • Recent drunk driving tragedy in the community
  • Local police crackdown

[1] Enter: Every 15 Minutes,, (Accessed January 2012)
[2] All program activity details gathered from About Us: Every 15 Minutes, (Accessed January 2012)
[3] All program goals gathered from About Us: Every 15 Minutes, (Accessed January 2012)
[4] Results from Every 15 Minutes Summary Report, (Accessed January 2012)
[5] Dept of Transportation (US), National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Traffic Safety Facts 2009: Alcohol-Impaired Driving. Washington (DC): NHTSA; 2010. Available at:

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